Manchester United has been the home to many a world star during its rich and illustrious history.
Old Trafford has long been seen as the pinnacle of world football for players across the globe and has hosted some of the finest talents of all-time.
However, one player who didn’t quite make it to the bright lights of the Theatre of Dreams was Macedonian striker Darko Pančev.
As reported by Sport Witness, Pančev has revealed that it wasn’t for the want of United trying, with Sir Alex Ferguson approaching the goalscorer during his playing days.
Despite not being a household name, Pančev is widely regarded as one of the finest footballers to come out of Macedonia an enjoyed career with some stellar teams across Europe.
Red Star Belgrade, Inter Milan, Fortuna Düsseldorf and FC Sion all served as home to Pančev during his playing days and United were close to securing his signature.
Reflecting on his career, the Macedonian spoke on his regret of joining Inter Milan when he was at the peak of his powers and had his pick of teams across the continent.
“I was very sought after at the time and had many offers, but unfortunately I chose the wrong club. Inter had an average team back then, in the shadow of AC Milan. I also had huge differences of opinion with the coach at the time,” he said.
Pančev then revealed the offer from United and described his decision to join the Italian league as a “stupid” one.
“Nevertheless, in the winter I received an offer from Sir Alex Ferguson, who wanted to bring me to Manchester United.
But I didn’t follow the call because I wanted to prove to the Italians that I could make it in Serie A. In hindsight I have to admit it was stupid!” said the striker.
Despite missing out on the move to United, Pančev, now 58, can look back at his career with an immense amount of pride having won the European Cup, UEFA Cup winner and finishing runner-up in the Ballon d’Or.